It’s shocking how helpful Sewanee has been. And it’s been helpful in exactly the way that I thought it would be. When you’re in an MFA program, everyone is either at your level or they have mature 30 year old careers. You never meet anyone who’s just a few years ahead of you. At Sewanee, it’s been great to see people who’ve published a few stories or who’ve just published a book or two. You see how the business works in practice.
On the other hand, it’s also a really intense experience. A constant party. Alcohol everywhere. So many 5 AM nights. I haven’t been writing much. I haven’t even been doing much reading! And I’m just burning down. It’ll be really great to get back to waking up at 7 AM and doing my few hours a day.
And, just on a deeper level, it’ll also be nice to leave the business of writing behind a little bit. In general, I’m very practical-minded and I’m pretty good at sorting out what a person needs to do to move ahead. But it does sometimes feel like a bit of transference. Like, it’s harder and, in some ways less satisfying, to think about the work itself. But that’s also what I want to do. If I wanted to think primarily about business and maneuvering, I’d go into an actual business of some sort.